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Bad breath can leave you feeling socially awkward. Strong, aromatic foods like onions and garlic often result in a short-term condition of bad breath. In most of these cases, you should still be able to remove the odors and refresh your breath by brushing, flossing and thoroughly rinsing your mouth with antiseptic mouthwash.  

Chronic bad breath–also known as halitosis–can have more serious implications. An unpleasant odor can often permeate your mouth and breath despite your best attempts at good oral hygiene. It’s also worth noting that chronic bad breath could also be an early symptom of a more serious medical issue.

Dry mouth is one of the more common causes of chronic bad breath. This could come from several different sources. Some prescription medications can reduce saliva production. Also, consuming alcohol on a regular basis can dehydrate you and cause a reduction in saliva production. In both of these cases, you should talk to your physician about your treatment options. You should continue to keep taking your medications, but there might be alternative options to help increase saliva production in your mouth.  

If you use tobacco on a regular basis it can leave strong and pervasive odors in your mouth, and the tar and chemicals can impede the saliva glands. If you use tobacco products on a regular basis you may consider speaking with your physician about a cessation program.

Undiagnosed diabetes or issues with uncontrolled blood sugar can result in sweet-smelling breath. Unpleasant odors in the mouth can also be an indicator of infection in the gums as well as certain liver and kidney problems.

If you are struggling with chronic bad breath, please call Derek M. Lichter, DDS, Inc.’s office in Chula Vista, California, at 619.422.5317 to understand your treatment options.